Wagashi: ‘Sagano’ Chrysanthemum Theme Namagashi

Autumn is upon us in Kyoto and one of my favorite wagashi makers looks to the rural Western Hills of Kyoto’s Sagano district for inspiration for a delicate and handmade chrysanthemum shaped namagashi.

Kyoto Autumn Theme Wagashi 嵯峨野生菓子

While I haven’t seen any chrysanthemums in bloom yet this year, mine are just budding, the theme of culinary delights in Kyoto are changing from summer to autumn and I thought that the foodies of the world would like to see some photos. So, here you are!

This namagashi (wet, or raw confection) comes from one of my favorite stores in Kyoto. I want to do a proper article about them in the near future. Namagashi is used in the tea ceremony and it invariably anko (red azuki bean paste) covered in one of several kinds of mochi and is hand-formed into a seasonal motif usually from nature or classical Japanese literature, painting and so on. Namagashi is almost never flavored with anything other than the mochi and bean. I find this a bit disappointing sometimes and have complained about it in other KyotoFoodie articles about namagashi.

Kyoto Autumn Chrysanthemum Shaped Namagashi
Kyoto Sagano Chrysanthemum Wagashi 京都宝泉堂 嵯峨野生菓子

Kyoto Autumn Chrysanthemum Shaped Namagashi
Kyoto Sagano Chrysanthemum Wagashi 京都宝泉堂 嵯峨野生菓子

Chrysanthemum Shaped Namagashi – Cross Section
Kyoto Sagano Chrysanthemum Wagashi 京都宝泉堂 嵯峨野生菓子
Japanese would never eat or serve a namagashi like this! This un-Japanese presentation is only for the benefit of our readers. Inside is anko (azuki bean paste) and wrapped in mochi hand-formed into a seasonal flower.

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13 Responses to “Wagashi: ‘Sagano’ Chrysanthemum Theme Namagashi”

  1. Katerina says:

    It is a piece of art!!!
    Thank you for sharing!!!

  2. CatherineSF says:

    How pretty–I love the way it is formed!

  3. Peko Peko says:

    Hello Katerina, Thank you for sharing your opinion! Glad you like this artful confection.

    Hello CatherineSF, You should see how they make them, it is completely by hand. They are authentic craftsmen.

  4. shaz says:

    That is so lovely and delicate.

  5. kyoto has some of the best mochi–loved our time there years back. Lovely presentation.

  6. Peko Peko says:

    Hi Shaz, Yes, very delicate, even on the palate.

  7. Heidi says:

    I love anko…oishii sou!

  8. Peko Peko says:

    Hi pigpigscorner, It is indeed. By the way, I REALLY like your Char Siu-ed Turkey Drumstick recipe! Nice one!

    Hello Heidi, Can you get anko where you live? (I am assuming that you don’t live in Japan.)

  9. gaga says:

    Wow, that’s beautiful!

  10. Marian says:

    Beautiful! What a vibrant color and eloquent shape! Definitely food art!

  11. Leon Koh says:

    good day

    I am going to Kyoto this end Nov.. may I know where is this shop that I can see them make this lovely and charm piece of an art.. may I have the address please

    beautiful blog you have here!!!!!

  12. Gorgeous! I am glad that I wandered here into your blog.

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